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Andrew Huberman & Red Light Therapy: Science, Devices & Tips

Last Reviewed on July 1, 2024

Dr. Andrew Huberman’s method of red light therapy reveals the connection between light energy and human biology. Learn how you can improve your vision, skin health, and sleep.

If you’ve been studying the benefits of red light therapy (RLT), chances are you’ve come across the name Dr. Andrew Huberman. Who? Huberman is a prominent figure in the field of neuroscience, known for championing RLT for its multifaceted benefits on individuals’ health.

Through his expertise and research, Huberman has implemented a strategic way to use red light therapies to enhance the body’s overall wellness. He also introduces and highlights an important link between light energy and human biology, which has changed the way we look at RLT.

So, if you’re keen to learn more about his unique RLT method, let’s get right to it.

Key Learnings

  • This method is based on timed light exposure using specific devices and light wavelengths.
  • Huberman’s RLT protocol may benefit skin and ocular health.
  • The Huberman method is also good for regulating sleep patterns, which may benefit shift workers, for example.

Huberman: Red Light Therapy Benefits

Renowned for his expertise in neuroscience, Dr. Huberman is widely considered an authority on human performance and is an advocate for red light therapy. Through his research and practical insight, he has shed light on the potential benefits of red light – from boosting your visual function to helping shift workers sleep better.

Improves Visual Function

One particular advantage that Dr. Huberman highlights is red light’s potential ability to boost your visual acuity and combat age-related vision loss. Through targeted exposure to red and near-infrared wavelengths, he suggests that RLT can stimulate photoreceptor health – especially in patients over 40.

Of course, this could also reverse some of the effects of macular degeneration. His insights have also been evidenced in a 2020 study on photobiomodulation (PBM) or red light therapy on dry age-related macular degeneration [1].

Ultimately, red light’s ability to penetrate deeply into the ocular tissues (even reaching the retina’s photoreceptors) makes it more efficient in improving your visual functioning.

elderly man with right hand covering right eye

Improves Skin Health

Red light therapy has been shown to improve your skin’s overall health, with its anti-inflammatory properties offering benefits like better wound healing and better collagen production [2, 3, 4]. It does this by triggering cellular processes that promote tissue repair and rejuvenation, and can even address skin concerns like acne, scars, and fine lines and wrinkles.

Moreover, RLT is a non-invasive therapy with little to no side effects when used correctly. This makes it a much more attractive option if you want to improve your skin without expensive or intrusive methods.

Useful For Shift Workers

If you have a non-traditional work schedule or you’re a shift worker, RLT can be an invaluable tool when you use the Huberman protocol. By regulating your cortisol levels and supporting healthier sleep patterns, red light therapy can lessen the negative effects of irregular sleep-wake cycles on your health.

According to Huberman, incorporating RLT into your routine can aid circadian disruption management, encouraging better sleep quality and improving your alertness and performance during the day.

nurse outside during night shift

What’s Huberman’s Light Therapy Protocol?

Dr. Andrew Huberman’s light therapy protocol highlights the importance of specifically timed light exposure for your overall well-being. He does this by explaining the procedures by which different wavelengths can affect your body.

His protocol emphasizes the benefits of getting natural sun exposure (sunlight) early in the morning – preferably within 30 minutes of waking – and again in the late afternoons.

In his podcast on Using Light (Sunlight, Blue Light & Red Light) to Optimize Health, Huberman explains that he also uses red light therapy in the evenings to help him relax and for the benefit of better sleep [5]. Generally, he suggests using red light therapy bulbs that are affordable and easy to source to reduce your cortisol levels and boost your melatonin production before you go to sleep [6].

Additionally, Huberman recommends using red light therapy panels that emit both red and near-infrared light therapy in your daily routine for wound healing and to promote cellular repair. By using both natural and artificial light sources, this protocol aims to optimize your metabolic health, improve your sleep quality, and support your physical health.

woman wearing eye mask while doing red light therapy

What Devices Does Huberman Use?

Dr Huberman uses several red light therapy devices in his routine. In the morning, he uses the Artograph LightPad LX 930; a lux lamp that simulates natural bright light to promote wakefulness. In the evenings, he uses red light therapy bulbs.

In his podcast, he also mentions using a red light panel. Although he doesn’t specify which brand or model he uses, he does emphasize the importance of choosing brands that use the right wavelengths. This is because they are more likely to bring out the mental and physical health benefits you’re seeking when using RLT.

Final Thoughts

Dr. Huberman’s red light therapy protocol offers an interesting approach to using this therapy to improve your well-being. By illuminating the benefits of red light therapy for eye and skin health, the science behind it, and its potential for improving the sleep of shift workers, Huberman has offered a natural, effective wellness solution for anyone who prioritizes holistic health.

So, if you have any questions about using RLT in your everyday routine, feel free to leave them in a comment below.

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7392581/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4148276/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4148276/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5523874/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3926176/
  6. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UF0nqolsNZc
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3499892/
Anne, Founder of Therapeutic Beams

Anne Linde

Since using it to clear up her acne in college, Anne has been an avid user and fan of all things light therapy. She now primarily uses red light therapy for its anti-aging benefits. Anne's mission is to make the science behind red light therapy easy to understand and accessible, so anyone can use it to take control of their health and wellbeing.

John Ni, BSc.

John, a graduate of the prestigious University of Pennsylvania, serves as a respected scientific reviewer at TherapeuticBeams.com. His expertise extends across various domains, including chemistry, pharmaceuticals, and dermatology. He contributes to publications like Royal Society of Chemistry, Drug Topics, and Practical Dermatology.

John Ni, Content Editor & Scientific Review

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